The calm that settled over the mafia after the Vongola’s shift in power was a relief for the entire underground. It was a feeling that no one wanted to give up. The older Bosses knew, however, that the peace couldn’t last for long. When the Vongola Decimo called a meeting of his allies, the underground quaked in fear. No one knew what to expect from the young boss. No one would miss their chance to find out.
Personally, Reborn was feeling a bit miffed Tsuna didn’t give him any forewarning. Shouldn’t that idiot know that, as his tutor, he would be the first to be pestered for information? As things were, he entered the elegantly decorated meeting hall with the rest of the restored arcobaleno. There was something about the way eyes followed nervously that spoke to their ominous aura. Even the Lackey, Skull, who trailed in behind the rest, cut an intimidating figure.
The group of seven— Colonello, Lal, Mammon, Verde, Fon, Skull, and himself, were led to the table nearest the three where the Decimo, his guardians, the Varia, and CEDEF were seated. The other seats were filled slowly, though no one dared to linger where they shouldn’t. By the time the movement in the hall settled there was only one table left empty. Moments later, a group of figures hidden in billowing cloaks guided by no one made their way to the table. Every step they took spread a wave of uneasiness further over the hall.
Reborn looked at Tsuna. Though the young man didn’t look worried in the least there was a certain edge in his smile. A warning against misbehavior but for whom? He could see Colonello struggling to keep his hand from his concealed weapon. Something about that group was seriously grating at him.
When the hooded figures were settled, Tsuna stood. His eyes, glowing that fiery orange, stared down his guests. Something proud swelled up in Reborn’s chest. This student of his had grown well. Even the stupid bronco, sat at a table with as many of his men as it could fit, didn’t take as well to his teachings.
“One week ago, I received contact from a society that has been largely unknown to our world, civilian or otherwise,” said the Decimo. Skull and Mammon froze at his words. Largely unknown, Reborn could see, was an important distinction. Mammon he could understand. They knew almost everything and what they didn’t, well, that was always resolved quickly. There was no question they knew about this hidden society. Skull, however. How did a civilian like him know of a thing like this? There was something incredibly irritating about the weakling knowing something he didn’t, especially something of this apparent scale.
“The representatives of this society alerted me to the fact that our societies have certain similarities. After centuries of staying hidden, they wish to open communication between us. I invited a small delegation,” he gestured pointedly at the table of cloaked figures, “to join this meeting today to begin this process.” A buzz of speculation ran through the hall. Reborn made sure to note that, besides the Vongola tables, Mammon and Skull were the only ones whose curiosity outweighed their apprehension. Even he was tense in his seat.
“I will tell you now if only to ease your worries, that these guests have sworn vows to cause no harm while here unless in self-defense. Please, do not worry, I would not allow harm to fall on my allies in my own home.” Tsuna looked over his guests one more time freezing them in their seats. His eyes met Reborn’s and it took almost all his power not to smirk at the mischief in the Decimo’s gaze. The brat was looking forward to his reaction.
“I’ll now turn over the floor to our guests, the Magic Disclosure Squad from the Wizarding World.” The what? Skull and Mammon leaned forward in their seats as the group stood and removed their cloaks.
Seven unfamiliar faces gazed about the hall. They were a group of mismatched ages and sizes dressed in ornately embroidered robes. It was easy to see, even in the short time it took for them to get in place, that they were a complete set of guardians. They weren’t all harmonized to the sky but they were protective all the same.
The stern looking woman wearing glasses was older than anyone else in the hall by at least half a decade. Her flames weren’t active but there was a distinct mist aura surrounding her. The next oldest was a tall black man with a thousand-watt smile. He looked to be in his mid to late forties and, even as an inactive rain, his presence was soothing and steady. The next four were around the same age: late twenties to early thirties. Kids really. Two men, both blond, one tall the other pointy, and two women, a freckled redhead, and a bushy brunet. They were the sun, clouds, storm, and lightning respectively in the group. Once again, none of their flames were active in the slightest. All six of them surrounded the sky.
Unlike the others, the sky was an actual child— barely older than Tsuna. He was nineteen at the very most in Reborn’s expert opinion. He was short and thin, his hair was a wild, black mess and his eyes glowed an eerie green behind his glasses. There was a scar like lighting on his forehead. Even if he hadn’t been leaking extraordinarily pure sky flames, the way he was surrounded would have given his type away.
The boy looked over at the table of arcobaleno sharply. There was something in his gaze that was penetrating and cold even as he gave an easy smile. Through his own alarmed and rapid heartbeat, he could barely hear Mammon’s startled inhale as the boy looked pointedly at Skull. His eyes softened and he winked. Everyone was staring at the pair, even the Decimo. As such, the whole hall was witness to the kiss Skull blew back. Had he been anyone other than the greatest hitman in the world, Reborn may have gaped at the scene. Colonello, Dino, and other nameless Mafiosi had no such titles to still their expressions. Fon’s face was still if only because of decades of training. Even Tsuna had briefly snapped out of his ‘boss persona’ and watched with wide eyes. How nostalgic. As if unaware of the commotion he’d instigated, the boy joined his companions.
Strangely enough, it wasn’t the elders of the group that moved to speak. They were both leaders in their own right but they stayed where they were. Instead, it was the youngest of the bunch. Perhaps not so odd, actually. He was a sky after all. Speaking of sky… Skull’s eyes never left the boy. Reborn could see it, the harmonization between them but, when on earth did that happen? How did the lackey know someone like that? It all made his head spin.
The boy stood confidently. The attention he drew didn’t seem to distract him in the least. His composure was commendable. The boy’s voice was rough as he spoke as if it was rarely used. It was neither low nor high in pitch; just rough. It wasn’t at all unpleasant to listen to. Skull seemed soothed by it.
“First off, I’d like to thank our host for hearing out me and mine. Allowing us here is an honor that will someday be paid in full. I’m not usually one for speeches but today itself can be considered a bit odd.” He smiled at the hall and ignored the looks of suspicion.
“The people standing around me are my friends and teachers, most of whom I’ve known of since I was much smaller than I am now. The lovely woman to my far right is my former teacher and Headmistress, Minerva McGonagall. Next to her is Lord Draco Malfoy head of the Ancient and Noble House of Malfoy and directly next to me is Hermione Granger, my right hand and long-time best friend. On my other side, my left hand, Neville Longbottom, one of the loyalist men I’ve had the pleasure to know and to him is Ginny Weasley, youngest of seven and toughest of the bunch. Finally, on my far left is a good friend and the man who gave us permission to accept this opportunity, Kingsley Shacklebolt, Minister of Magic.” The boy waited a moment to let the information sink in and give his voice a rest.
The first question that came to Reborn’s mind was why is the boy’s best friend in her thirties? Was she his babysitter when he was young? No, probably not. There was something about the boy. Something about the steel in his stride and fire roaring eyes. That and his interaction with the Lackey. There was something wrong with him. The boy took a deep breath preparing himself for his own introduction. Skull stifled a snicker knowing what was coming.
“I am Lord Harry Potter-Black, head of the Ancient and Noble houses of Potter and Black, and,” he twitched. Skull laughed outright, “the Man-Who-Conquered. My companions and I are from a society that lives hidden alongside both the civilians and mafia. We call our society the Wizarding World. The name, I’m afraid, is entirely literal. Us seven who stand in front of you are called wizards and witches. Where the mafia has people capable of activating Dying Will Flames we are a society of people capable of manipulating the energy we’ve come to call Magic.”
Loud shouts of disbelief tore through the meeting. Had it not been for the stiff line of Mammon’s shoulders and the dopey smile on the weakling’s face, Reborn might have been inclined to join in the chaos. It was rather unbelievable; a secret world of magicians who suddenly want to share themselves with the world. Everyone in the hall froze as the Decimo knocked lightly on his table. His eyes narrowed dangerously.
“Let him finish.” No one dared argue. Harry, who still seemed unaffected by the clamor, nodded thankfully at the other young man.
“In the past few years, researchers such as my right hand and our Department of Mysteries have found many connections between your flames and our magic. They have even gone so far to conclude that both came from a single source and are like cousins energy-wise. Because of this, the Ministry of Magic has decided to welcome the flame active and their families into our world should they wish it. Everyone here is eligible to join us.” Harry and his right hand, Hermione, raised their hands. Decorated, pointy sticks shot out from their sleeves and into their hands. With a wave, a small stack of books appeared on each table. In front of Skull, a single rose appeared. He was the only one to receive such a gift.
“These books are a gift from us to you. These are what you could call an introduction to our world. A brief look at our history, capabilities, and creatures. Whether you read them or not is entirely up to you. Should you like to know more, feel free to ask. Me and mine will be in the area for a while.” He bowed lowly, an action that was mimicked by the rest of his group. “Thank you for hearing us out.”
With that, the wizard sand witches sat back down. All except Harry who instead turned to face the arcobaleno. As he walked, the hall tensed further. He was a man on a mission and showed no signs of faltering. Leon was calm, sensing no danger, but Reborn was too tightly wound to notice.
A loud crack echoed and the boy was gone. Another and suddenly he was right behind Skull’s chair. Had he waited, Reborn would have noticed Hermione and Nevil shaking their heads and complaining about Harry’s show-off tendency’s. If that had happened, he probably wouldn’t have pressed his gun into the boy’s throat. Colonello might not have jabbed his weapon into his side. Mammon froze as they accosted the wizard. Skull didn’t even turn around, just twirled the rose between his fingers.
“Skull, my lovely phoenix of a man, can you get these guns off of me? They’re quite uncomfortable.” Skull scoffed on that annoying high voice of his. He turned around and glared at Harry.
“That’s what you get for not telling me you were coming,” he exclaimed, “you can get riddled with holes for all the Great Skull cares, Sweetheart.” Reborn watched as the boy pouted like a child denied chocolate. It didn’t seem to fit his face but from the way Skull’s eyes softened, he didn’t mind. This was weird. Cautiously, he and Colonello eased the pressure of their guns.
“Please, Kitten? Not even a hello?” He begged. It was hard to believe this pitiful boy was the same one who had thrown the hall into chaos minutes earlier.
“If you want your hello so badly, get passed Reborn and Colonello yourself. Anyone who knows you knows you sure as hell didn’t write that speech. It had Hermione written all over it. You could at least do this on your own. You’re a big boy, sweetheart.” This Skull, the one who was scolding that powerful sky, was so different than the one Reborn and the other arcobaleno knew. He was so relaxed.
Harry sighed. With a flick and a twist of his wrist, both of his attackers’ chairs rammed into the back of their knees. They didn’t fall but the space they left as they started was more than enough for him to get through. Quick as a flash, he wrapped his arms around Skull who gladly returned the affection.
“Hello, Sweetheart,” Skull muttered into Harry’s neck. The pair, trapped in their own little lovey-dovey world, didn’t notice the shocked and uncomprehending stares being shot their way. Reborn, though he wasn’t as unbalanced as a large portion of the hall, would admit to some disorientation. Who knew the stuntman had a sky? Or could hold someone so tenderly? Tsuna and his guardians clearly had not been informed of this beforehand. The magical group seemed unperturbed as ever. Mammon’s gaze was fixed solely on the wizard’s back. The Man-Who-Conquered; such an impressive title for someone so young. A title that obviously had their mist captivated.
Several moments later, the stunned silence was broken by a pointed cough from the tall blond, Neville. The hugging pair broke apart, neither looking embarrassed in the slightest. He’d let them have their moment. Reborn hadn’t even been the one to interrupt them. Skull was now completely available for interrogation. He turned a glare at their audience. They turned away without hesitation for fear of the consequences.
“Lackey, who is this?” The wizard turned cold eyes on Reborn. He was like a snake poised to bite at any second and he felt a tendril of fear twine around his spine. Though it hadn’t been said with any malice, the boy was powerful and clearly didn’t like skull’s nickname. He calmed in an instant as Skull patted his shoulder.
“This is Harry, my lover.” He pulled Harry close. “Oh, and the reason why I’m immortal!” No one was sure exactly how to respond to that.